Position Sensor Market: An Overview

A position sensor is referred to a device that is utilized for measuring the distance traveled by a body beginning from its reference point. The device measures the linear or angular position in reference to a fixed position. It can also be used for detecting the presence and absence of object.

position sensor market

Position sensors are the most utilized sensors among varied end-use industry verticals. With the utilization of varied sensing technologies, the position sensors are used in applications such as automotive, motorsport, automation, industrial sector, medical applications, aerospace, and many more. The increasing trend of industrial automation is providing strong growth prospects for the market to thrive with the growing significance of sensors in industries that make processes fully automatic providing exceptional service. Position sensors are used for motion control of robots, to tank-level sensing. They are also utilized for precise positioning of objects at nanometre level, also, used for measuring precision thickness of disk drives, assembly line testing, and machine tool metrology among other numerous applications. With the increasing shipments of robots in industries are further propelling the growth of industrial automation, fueling the position sensor market demand. As per the UNCTAD, Trade and Development Report, 2017, the annual installation of industrial robots in the world increased from 120.6 thousand units in 2010 to 253.7 thousand units in 2015. Furthermore, with industrial automation offering high benefits by reducing production costs through the reduction of errors, and contributing to raising scalability, the market is propelled to grow at a significant pace in the coming years.

position sensor market

Source: UNCTAD, 2017, Trade and Development Report, global annual installation of industrial robots, in thousands of units

With the growing medical industry, position sensors are used in medical devices, offering significant market growth prospects. For example, medical devices utilizing position sensors include MRI scanners, prosthetics, ultrasound equipment, and automated laboratory equipment and many more. The growing number of diseases worldwide will continue to augment the market growth with the installation of position sensors while manufacturing medical devices for various diagnostic and treatment purposes worldwide. This has led to the deployment of sophisticated medical equipment round the globe, further propelling the market growth as well. As per the OECD stats, in 2017, Japan installed the highest number of MRI scanners per 1,000,000 inhabitants, with 55.21 MRI units/million population. One of the major reasons involve the highest geriatric population in the world.

position sensor market

Source: OECD, MRI Units per 1,000,000 inhabitants, 2017

The growing adoption of wearables devices is further providing an impetus in fueling the position sensor market growth in the forecast period. This is attributed to the fact that consumers are in constant need for real-time insights. Also, the growing trend of adoption of IoT and smart mobile devices are offering high growth prospects for the manufacturers to escalate the development of wearable devices, further proliferating the market growth at a notable CAGR. The use of wearables ranges from consumer wearable electronic devices that assist in well-being of an individual to medical wearable devices in order to keep a constant check on patient vital parameters during the treatment process or post-treatment. With the growth of sensing technologies, the global wearable industry will also continue to increase with the soaring demand for accurate real-time information. In sports sector, advancements in technology have enabled wearables to track functional movements, workload, biomechanical and bio-vital markers by the use of sensors, this has further helped in maximizing performance of an individual and minimizing the level of injuries. These wearable monitoring systems further aid in providing continuous physical data and help in the development of player-specific treatment plans and training programmes. Thus, the convergence of semiconductor technology, physiology, and predictive health information have provided wearables an opportunity to strengthen its clinical and translational utility for sports.

The manufacturing sector is the hardest-hit sector due to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus globally. This has put a strong impact on the sale of position sensors as well, as these sensors are utilized in the manufacturing of products. The virus originated in China and disrupted the supply chain of raw materials for other regions of the world. This is due to the fact that the majority of the factories supplying raw materials are located in China, and as the country is one of the major manufacturers of semiconductor devices, this will definitely put an impact on market growth in the current year. The lockdown measures led to the shut down of manufacturing facilities, further impacting the market growth as well. The United Nations predicted that the current novel coronavirus outbreak is likely to cause global FDI to decrease by around 5 to 15% owing to the downfall in the manufacturing sector worldwide along with the shutting down of factories.

Geographically, the Asia Pacific region is accounted for holding a significant market share in the global position sensor market. The growing trend of automation in industries along with the setting-up of manufacturing plants in the APAC region is contributing to the market growth. In addition, the increasing demand for consumer electronics is further providing an impetus in fueling the market growth in the region, specifically, in the emerging economies of India and China.

Furthermore, the demand for position sensors is soaring with the surge of the aerospace and defense industry. It has been widely observed that all the modern aircraft flight control systems are fly-by-computer systems. These computers, known as flight management computer, FMC, receive command signal by position sensors that are mounted on the control column pedals and thrust levers for actuating movement of the flight control surfaces and provide power to engines. The position sensors utilized are high specification contactless LVDT, i.e. Linear Variable Differential Transformer. These are preferred due to their long-operational life and are reliable in extreme operating conditions. Hence, the market is propelled to grow at a significant pace with increasing investments in the defense sector as the security threats continue to intensify. Moreover, the presence of companies involved in designing and manufacturing of position sensors for various aircraft applications that include primary and secondary flight control is further providing an impetus in burgeoning the market growth.   


Vibha Saklani is a Market Research Analyst at KSI, working on the estimates and global reports on multiple industries spanning from IoT to food and beverages, with a special knack for healthcare, medical devices, and related markets. With the addition of her formal education in Biotechnology and having a research background, she is able to shed more light on the detailed analysis of the story. To read more articles by her, and for more information regarding multiple global markets, visit www.knowledge-sourcing.com.